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ISP MetroNet UK Gobbled by LDC Backed Management Buyout

Thursday, June 14th, 2012 (9:03 am) - Score 1,016

Manchester-based business ISP Metronet UK, which operates a hybrid superfast fibre optic (FTTx) and wireless broadband network, claim to be planning for further coverage expansion after a management buyout supported by private equity firm LDC pushed an additional investment of £11 Million into the provider.

Metronet UK was founded in 2003 by James McCall (Operations Director), Roy Davies (Finance Director), Bill Riordan (Business Development Director) and former Chairman, David Ashmore, with the backing of angel investor group Acceleris and private equity investors YFM Equity Partners via the North West Business Investment Scheme (an ERDF 2000-06 funded Venture Capital Loan Fund project).

As part of the deal, LDC is investing £11m of equity funding for a majority equity stake, which should enable the ISPs existing backers to exit and provide additional capital for expansion. The full management team, which is currently led by CEO Elliott Mueller, will remain in position.

Elliott Mueller, CEO of Metronet UK, said:

This is an important step in our development. Acceleris and YFM Equity Partners have supported the business from a start-up to becoming the largest hybrid Internet service provider to businesses in the UK. This has provided a strong platform for further expansion at a time when business’ requirements and demand for service quality continue to increase, driven by the acceleration of cloud computing and increasingly data-dependent business models and operations.

In LDC, we now have a single institutional investment partner who has the confidence and expertise to take the business forward with us. Their backing is testament to the strength of the company we’ve built over the last nine years – the quality of our team and our service. It is also excellent news for our customers who will benefit from increased investment in the business, enabling us to continue to meet their increasing requirements.”

Last month saw Metronet UK expand its network reach into the market town of Macclesfield (Cheshire East / Cheshire) and surrounding areas. Angela Warner, Portfolio Director at YFM Equity Partners, said: “the company still has significant opportunities for further growth and we wish the management team continued success“.

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